By Timothy Reisling Betticut
All the giggling chorines helped dress me each night and my staff did
the primping during the day. I’m tall, leggy, redheaded and desperate
to figure a way out. Tonight we’re each done up in a skimpy little
silky dress with a full but short skirt. We wear big hats. That means
one hand plastered there and the other anchors the hemline. Steps are
designed to show off blood red panties. Silly little innocent music and
lots of hugging and kissing – for a guy like me – there’s a thin line
between naughty and nice!
****** ******** ******** *********
A community play. A sesquicentennial event in small-town America. There
are companies who hire twelfth directors from New York and send the on
a circuit of nowhere cities to produce a play to benefit the local
hospital, animal shelter or the heartbreak of
children-without-computers. You know, some chi-chi cause that’ll quench
country-clubber guilt as they drive through slums in their Beemers.
What is really is a chance to let the gentry gambol. They young and the
randy get to dress-up and play touch without suspicion. Martial boredom
gets a shot of variety in what some call might call wife-swapping but
we call ‘musical theatre’.
The way it works is that that the Junior Hospital League hires the
company. The director comes in, casts all the young husbands and wives
in various worn-out skits and production numbers, only spouses are
never partnered. While there are a few people who really think that
they’re getting the Big Break here, the fun is all in the chorus. Eight
to ten couples switch around partners in each scene until everybody’s
had a chance to grope everybody else. The rehearsals are where the
inter pollination takes place – or shortly afterward. Smarmy suburban
I’m one of those directors. The name’s Mitty. Tim Mitty. Dance was the
game that got me into the business. I was small-burg-good. But in the
BigTown, where everybody’s magnificent, it was prudent to switch to
acting, then crew. In the Big Apple, I got to second stage manage once
on the Fourth Year of Cats. Big Deal! It lasted three months. Then I
got prop manager with the New England Road show of Dream Girls. Then I
got nothing. Until the Candieshow Company hired me to become an
itinerant director. Actually the money’s pretty good. They pay all of
room and board. And the locals treat me like an arts emissary from the
capitol. I also get drunk a lot and laid at least as often. And I get
bored out of my nervous system. At 41, I’m at the bottom of a career
that never had a top. No one ever has recovered from the Candieshow
circuit. It’s the end. I’ll leave it as an alcoholic or the husband of
some rich provincial widow, or both.
Hollyard North Dakota was the stop. Two months in the old mill town of
70,000. The mills were gone. Now there are three high-tech swat shops
employing 89% of the labor force to assemble gee-taws. The other 11%
either managed the plants, sold pizzas or served as a parasite class of
doctors, accountants, minor legal craftsmen or professional ya-ya’s to
the rest. It’s that bunch who hired me, or at least the younger 200 or
so. During the long New Hampshire winters, these Young Upwardly Stuck
Professionals sense their exile from the mainstream. Most of them
realize this is it. They’re frozen into America’s Siberia, a collusion
of cultures. But it’s something to keep jammed behind a turn in the
subconscious. So they try to play and screw and drink. It’s Candishow’s
job to arrange a game for them every four years.
This time the budget was terrible and Candieshow wants bucks. So they
agreed that I’d also work as Recreation Consultant to the town for my
stay there. Dung! That meant my days are filled directing a small
office of underpaid girls who filled their boring hours with stuff like
the rental of winter sports equipment or managing the municipal ice
rink. They didn’t like me much and I avoided them at all costs. Not a
good deal, especially since my secretary, Rosemary was in the show.
The Show. It was cast and into rehearsals. We’d been at it or a month.
Two hours every night including weekends. Talent was gruel thin that
winter. Cows had more grace to music than my chorus line. Sixteen
skinny bovines with more interest in genitalia than glissando. And they
sowed a passel of genitalia Actually they were an attractive… Hell,
they were a gorgeous group. Everybody wanted the chorus, so if you
can’t find hoofers, settle for lookers. The men were all beefcake and
the women babes. In fact, I was even able to pick girls who were
approximately the same size. Busty, tall and leggy. In the right wigs
and makeup, they looked like eight identical twins.
Tow of the guys, Randy and Thunder were gay. Ironic, they were both
gynecologists. A waste. So I guess I chose them purposely. I thought
that’d get back at the randier girls a bit and besides, they were the
best male dancers I could get (ain’t it always the case?). But with
fewer partners, the girls were on simmer for a couple of weeks – not
happy, particularly Rosemary, my secretary. So things got worse after
Three weeks before we opened, I lost a woman. The company moved her
husband out of town – that was it. After all, would you them to screw a
promotion to make her debut in the chorus of “Wandering Doctors,” our
Way-Off-Broadway spectacle? Right. They went. Leaving a hole in the
line. What do? Hollyard’s entire dance ensemble was working for me.
There was no one else who could learn the thing in the few weeks until
opening. And since the women were distinctly more graceful than the
men, they had the demanding routines. What I needed was a tall, leggy
showgirl who could memorize some complicated numbers fast.
Who knows where ideas come from? It was at work watching Rosemary bend
over in a particularly snug skirt when it hit. I remembered Thunder was
proud of his buns. Hmmm. Why not? If we could talk him into trying the
chorine role, I could pair him off with Randy and take the other male
part myself. After all, we both knew the routines. Hell, I wrote them.
And we were both the same size as the girls. Yea. In fact it’d be
simple to get Thunder to sign on, hell, the faggot would probably
squeal in delight to get into those costumes.
Only it wasn’t… simple. In my enthusiasm I called Rosemary and
broached the idea to her. She looked sullen. Let me tell you about her.
She’s a brunette with ivory skin and the kind of eyes that people have
when they never have to ask twice for anything. A spoiled child turned
grown-up. A very pretty child. I tried to cheer her, only to set her
off. Wow, was she mad at me. She made it clear that all of the girls
were upset with the way I was directing things. They were planning to
contact Candieshow with a raft of complaints. Now, with this latest
problem it looked as if the show might not come off at all – there I
was trying to talk one of the town’s leading doctors into a humiliating
and degrading situation, just to save my job.
Save my job? It hadn’t occurred to me that a tide of complaints from
Hollyard would cause Candieshow to dump me. But of course they would.
And I wasn’t even an alcoholic yet… much less married to a Grande
dame. Bad. This had to be recovered – FAST!
Well what, I asked, would she suggest I do? We needed a girl fast who
could learn those complicated routines and look good in the line.
Except for Thunder, I was the only one who could fit and I certainly
wouldn’t… I mean she wouldn’t expect… Oh come on…. I can’t mince
around… NO! Didn’t she realize what the numbers called for? The way
the girls worked with men? The nature of the costumes? The… No…
no… and NO!
They insisted that they dress me up for the first rehearsal. In fact,
they insisted that I be dressed up from morning until night. And
everybody helped. All of the chorines worked on me each night and my
staff did my primping during the day. Tim Mitty went away. I was Candi
Liptz. Tall and leggy and reheaded and desperate to figure a way out.
Two months this had to last. A month of rehearsals and another of
weekend shows. Nine weeks.
Rosemary loved it. Each night we rehearsed a different production
number. Each night I’m dressed in some simulation of the real costume
that would come in a couple of weeks. One night’s the Bit Hat and Leg
Show number. Each of the girls is done up in a skimpy little black
dress with a full but short skirt. A big hat’s perched on their heads.
Then they dance in the wind (an offstage fan),. Of course they’ve got
to keep one hand plastered to their hat and the other holds down their
hemline. The steps are designed to give them plenty of chance to show
off their blood red panties, since they’ve got to use at least one hand
to work their partners And when they do – whoosh! EXPOSURE. Nice. And
the music’s that old – old standard, ‘Once In Love With Amy.’ Silly
little innocent music and lots of hugging, kissing and full leg nudity.
There’s a thin line between naughty and nice. And a blustery fan blurts
skirts across it.
I’m hatted and skirted and made up to match the other girls. They’ve
worked hard and I’m a girl. It’s awful. My dancing kept me slim and I
stayed that way. I’m 5’7″ – so are the girls. With padding and
corseting, we fit easily into the same costumes. They’ve paired em with
Thunder as a kind of revenge. Of course Rosemary explained my original
plan to him. Just what I needed, a pissed-off gay partner. With my
hands busy at hat and hem, Thunder had a field day – my field, his
hands. I’m felt.
This is an early number and not too hot. So while Thunder gets to hold
me a lot, there aren’t any groping scenes, and the partners don’t deep
kiss, just pecks. Argh! Wait until the later numbers.
(To be Continued in Part II of Girl Play)